As previously mentioned, my daughter is a bit obsessed with the Octonauts at the moment. It is her favourite TV programme and everytime we go to toy shops she always makes straight for the Octonauts toys. She got the Gup-B as a present for learning to use the potty.
The Octonauts are a series of cartoon characters created by Meomi (Vicky Wong and Michael Murphy) who have undersea adventures in their Octopod. Their mission is to explore, rescue and protect which they do while having lots of adventures. Their leader is Captain Barnacles and their are several other characters based loosely around other animals, most of them land mammals! The programmes can be seen on CBeebies or you can buy the DVDs.
---About the product:
The Gup-B comes complete with Kwazii, a shark and a noose to catch the shark with. Kwazii is bizarrely dressed in a green outfit which I can't actually recall seeing him wearing on the TV show, but maybe he did in one episode! The character is about 2 inches high and has bendable bits for tops of legs and arms which allows him to sit down and move his arms. The Gup-B looks very similar to the one on the TV program so it is very recognisable. it has a large clear plastic dome on the top which can be opened so that Kwazii can sit inside. The Gub-B is designed to be played with both in and out os water so has features for both. it can be pushed easily around on land or when used in the water, you can push the orange fin on top which will open the mouth of the gup. You can then press it again when out of the water to shoot a small amount of water out. The shark is grey with orange stripes on it and comes with a blue 'net' which can be used to catch it. It is a blue piece of plastic with a circle at the end which fits over the shark's head.
As ever with Octonauts toys, my daughter was very excited to see the box for this and even more so when we took it out of the box for her to play with. She immediately got her other Octonauts figures and began playing with them all together. She can put Kwazii in and out of the Gup and enjoys being able to move it around. Kwazii does not stay sitting upright in the Gup easily and falls over a lot, but at present this does not seem to bother my daughter. She really enjoys playing with this in the bath and we squirt water with it a lot. You have to be quite quick though because as soon as you take it out of the water, the water starts to drain from it so you need to squirt it quickly if you want any water to come out of it! It is still a bit hard for my daughter to use on her own, so I tend to use it for her.
She doesn't play with the shark very much and hasn't really worked out what the net is for yet, but this hasn't detracted from her enjoyment of the product. She likes to play with the creatures from the other character packs instead and plays with the other Octonauts alongside Kwazii.
The Gup-B with Kwazii costs around £17 which I feel is way too expensive for a few bits of plastic. Unfortunately, nowadays anything which is branded with kids TV characters tends to be on the pricey side. We managed to get it at £10 which I feel is good value for it. It has kept her entertained and she can do a lot of imaginative play with it. The toy states it is for ages 3+ but I feel it could be suitable for slightly younger as long as they were supervised as the pieces are not that small. I would recommend this for young Octonauts fans, but I would wait for it to be on offer first!